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New mural celebrates creativity, art in Ann Arbor

'Challenge Everything. Create Anything.' mural reflects community energy

Work on the “Challenge Everything. Create Anything.” mural started this week. Photo | Doug Coombe, courtesy of Destination Ann Arbor.
Work on the “Challenge Everything. Create Anything.” mural started this week. Photo | Doug Coombe, courtesy of Destination Ann Arbor.

ANN ARBOR, Mich. – This week, look up to see art in motion as you pass Courthouse Square.

Beginning this week, “Challenge Everything.Create Anything.,” the latest mural to be painted on an Ann Arbor building, will be spread across the 10-story wall of the apartment building. 

A collaborative effort by Destination Ann Arbor, Wickfield Properties and artist Mary Thiefels, the mural represents the human creativity, playful energy and ingenuity of the Ann Arbor community. 

A photoshop rendering of what the completed mural will look like.  Photo courtesy of Destination Ann Arbor
A photoshop rendering of what the completed mural will look like. Photo courtesy of Destination Ann Arbor

“There are four goals we aim to accomplish with this one-of-a-kind mural,” said Mary Kerr, president and CEO of Destination Ann Arbor. 

“We want to celebrate our local arts community, inspire our residents, make something beautiful in our community, and motivate travelers to visit the Ann Arbor area. We believe we can utilize our local artists like no destination has done before, creating vibrant works of art that capture the unique attitude and voice of Ann Arbor – and give something back."

Theifels is the founder of Tree Town Murals, whose murals have been painted all around Ann Arbor. They can be seen on the Detroit Street Filling Station, Jerusalem Garden and Google Ann Arbor, among many other places. 

Theifels, who is originally from Ann Arbor, will be working with her husband, Danijel Matanic, on the larger-than-life mural.

“Being able to creatively contribute to the fabric of my hometown with Danijel and help continue to grow Ann Arbor’s public art presence is a dream come true,” said Thiefels.

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“We believe art has great purpose, and we are excited to partner with Destination Ann Arbor to bring color to this location, which we see as the gateway to the city,” said Brad Hayosh, president and CEO of Wickfield Properties. “We chose Mary [Theifels] for this project as she understands both art and what makes Ann Arbor special; we can’t wait to see the finished product.”

Check out progress on the mural throughout the rest of July and August.  Photo courtesy of Destination Ann Arbor.
Check out progress on the mural throughout the rest of July and August. Photo courtesy of Destination Ann Arbor.

“Challenge Everything. Create Anything.” is the second mural for Wickfield Properties and is scheduled to be completed in mid-August. 

In the future, Destination Ann Arbor intends to commission more artwork from local artists as well as create a mini-documentary series highlighting local artists from Washtenaw County and the inspiration they find in and around Ann Arbor and its metro area. 

This story was sponsored by Destination Ann Arbor. 

Courthouse Square Senior Apartments is located at 100 S. 4th Ave.

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